PORTLAND---Masses and special events at churches across Maine will highlight the diocese’s celebration of the Feast Day of St. Patrick (Sunday, March 17).
The feast day holds special significance in the Diocese of Portland as St. Patrick, along with St. Jean Baptiste, is a secondary patron of the diocese. In addition, St. Patrick Church in Newcastle was the first church in the country named for St. Patrick. It was dedicated by Fr. Jean-Louis Lefebvre de Cheverus on July 17, 1808, a year before the cornerstone was laid for St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City. The original St. Patrick Church has been in continual use longer than any other Catholic church in New England.
St. Patrick, who was captured by Irish raiders as a teenager in the fifth century, ultimately escaped his enslavement, entered the Church, and returned to Ireland where he brought the message of the Gospel to the very people who had kept him in slavery.
Bishop Robert P. Deeley, whose parents immigrated to the U.S. from County Galway, Ireland, will celebrate Mass on Saint Patrick’s Day at 10 a.m. at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, located on 307 Congress Street in Portland.
Here are further details on other gatherings planned to celebrate the Feast Day of St. Patrick around Maine:
Saturday, March 16
The Knights of Columbus will host a traditional Irish dinner (with entertainment) following the 4 p.m. Mass at St. John Church on 217 York Street in Bangor. Tickets are $12.50 adults and $5 for children. They may be purchased in advance at the parish office. For more information, call (207) 217-6740.
Celebrate the Feast Day of St. Patrick by joining in a celebration in the hall of St. Charles Borromeo Church on 132 McKeen Street in Brunswick. The evening, which runs from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m., will include live music, a step dancing performance, a sing-along, a raffle and silent auction, plus Irish soda bread, desserts, coffee & tea. The cost is $10 per person, $5 for children ages 12 and under, with a maximum of $25 per family. Proceeds will benefit the All Saints Parish’s upcoming youth ministry mission trip to the Adirondacks. For more information, contact Debbie Poulton at (207) 725-2624.
The Knights of Columbus will hold their annual St. Patrick's Day Dinner on Saturday, March 16, 4:30 to 6 p.m., at St. Joseph Parish Hall on 133 Middle Street in Farmington. The dinner will include entertainment provided by the Franklin County Fiddlers. Please make reservations by calling Paul Hersey at (207) 778-0586.
The St. Patrick’s Bazaar, a Houlton tradition that began over 100 years ago, will be renewed at St. Anthony Hall, located on 112 Military Street, from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. The event will feature corned beef and cabbage, roast turkey, and all the fixings. Admission is $10, but $32 for a family of four. Doors will open at 2 p.m. for the traditional “cake walk” for children. The bazaar will also include a raffle and auction. For more information, call (207) 532-2871.
Parishioners of North Waterboro and Shapleigh will host a St. Patrick's Day Dinner in the parish hall of St. Matthew Church, located on 19 Dora Lane in Limerick, from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. An Irish boiled dinner featuring cabbage, potatoes, onions, carrots, and turnips will be served, along with Irish stew, colcannon (Irish mashed potatoes), macaroni & cheese, hot dogs, salad, and freshly baked Irish soda bread and Irish brown bread. Irish lemon pudding tart will be on the menu for dessert. Beverages are also included. The cost is $10 for adults and $4 for children ages 6-12. There is no cost for younger children. If you would like more information, please contact Helen Parlon at (603) 522-5387 or Barbara Britten at (207) 636-7972.
A St. Patrick's Day Corned Beef & Cabbage Supper will be held in the St. Philip Church Hall on 404 Goodwins Mills Road in Lyman from 5 to 6:30 p.m. The menu includes corned beef, cabbage, potatoes, vegetables, rolls, beverages, and homemade desserts. The cost is $9 for adults, $4 for children age 7-12, and free for children age 6 and under. Takeout is available. The church hall is wheelchair accessible. For more information, call (207) 282-3321.
The annual Knights of Columbus Corned Beef and Cabbage Dinner will be held in the hall of St. Pius X Church, located on 492 Ocean Avenue in Portland, at 6 p.m. Tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for children 12 and under. For more information, contact Bill Green at (207) 773-8619.
A corned beef dinner in honor of St. Patrick’s Day will be held at St. Maximilian Kolbe Church, located on 150 Black Point Road in Scarborough, from 5:45 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tickets are $15 for adults, $29 for couples, $13 for seniors ($25 for senior couples), and $7 for children ages five through twelve. Children four and under will be admitted free. Irish dancers from the Stillson School of Dance will perform at the dinner. The event is hosted by the St. Maximilian Kolbe Knights of Columbus. Tickets will be available at the door or by calling the parish office in advance at (207) 883-0334.
The annual St. Patrick’s Day Dinner Dance to benefit St. André Health Care’s Memorial Garden and Catholic Relief Services will be held in the hall of St. Mary Church on 236 Eldridge Road in Wells on Saturday, March 16. Corned beef and cabbage, along with ham, will be on the menu. Music will be provided by Tom Pomeroy. The evening begins with a social from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. The cost is $25. To reserve a spot, call (207) 251-4009 or (207) 850-6488.
The Knights of Columbus will host its annual St. Patrick's Day Corned Beef & Cabbage Dinner on Saturday, March 16, at 5 p.m. at St. Denis Hall, across from the church on 298 Grand Army Road in Whitefield. In addition to corned beef and cabbage, the menu includes potatoes, onions, other vegetables, coleslaw, breads, beverages, and desserts. Freewill donations to benefit the St. Denis Community Hall will be accepted. For more information, call (207) 542-0820.
Sunday, March 17
A St. Patrick’s Day lunch will be held at St. Bartholomew Church, located on 8 Two Lights Road in Cape Elizabeth, at noon (following 11 a.m. Mass). Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, $5 for children ages 3-12, and free for children two and under. Tickets will be available at the door, at parish offices, and after Masses. For more information, call (207) 799-5528.
Come and celebrate the wonderful Irish heritage that was instrumental in the formation of St. Patrick Church in Newcastle at a special Saint Patrick’s Day Dinner at 5:30 p.m. The event will be held in the Cheverus Hall (next to the church) on 380 Academy Hill Road. A traditional corned beef dinner (roast chicken will also be offered) with all the usual side dishes, including home-baked Irish soda bread and desserts, will be served. Join in the fun and sing along to traditional Irish songs! Raffles will include three gift baskets: a basket of traditional Irish products, a platinum and gold St. Bridget’s Cross as well as a Lucky Shamrock Lottery. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children under 12 years of age. For more information or tickets, call Bernadette Steele at (207) 832-6163. Tickets will also be sold after Masses on March 9, 10, and 16.
For further details and information, visit the St. Patrick’s Day page of the diocesan website.
“These gatherings are meant to celebrate St. Patrick and his faith,” said Bishop Deeley. “They remind us that we do that best when we live as he lived, filled with the love of God he found in Jesus Christ and striving to carry the Good News of Jesus to others.”